Tedesco's state superintendent decision expected next week
Posted January 18, 2012
Raleigh, N.C. — Wake County school board member John Tedesco says he will decide by Jan. 26 whether he will run this year for state school superintendent.
Rumors have been circulating for months that Tedesco, a Republican, has been considering a run against Democratic incumbent June Atkinson, but he has neither confirmed nor denied them.
In a statement released Wednesday afternoon, however, he said he and his family plan to devote the next week to "serious and prayerful consideration" of a potential statewide run.
"During recent months, community leaders whom I admire and respect from across this great state have asked me to consider bringing my dedication, leadership, and lifetime of passion for helping children to the office of State Superintendent," the District 2 school board member, who represents southeast Wake County, said.
"I am honored by their belief in my tenacity and track record of success. I truly believe that together we can strengthen education in North Carolina. We can and must produce significant measurable results for our students, support parents, empower teachers, reduce bureaucracy, and increase local controls."
If Tedesco runs, he'll face primary opposition from Cary teacher Ray Martin and former Monroe City Council candidate Richard Alexander, who've already declared their candidacy.
On the Democratic side, Atkinson will face Rep. Rick Glazier, D-Cumberland, in the primaries. Both announced their intentions to run Wednesday.
Atkinson, who was first sworn in as superintendent seven months late in 2005 because of election litigation and who sued four years later to protect her powers, said in an interview she doesn't want to leave office during what she calls a remodeling effort for the public schools.
"It was a hard decision but there's quite a few things that we have under way," Atkinson told The Associated Press. "I feel like we're in the middle of the game and I don't want to leave the game."